In the first-of-its-kind ‘phygital’ auction of an Indian artist’s work, Hefty.art, Web 3.0’s most discerning art space, will partner with Sotheby’s, the world’s premier destination for art and luxury auctions, to offer ‘Fury’, by legendary artist M.F Husain. The collaboration will see both the physical painting, created by Husain in 2000, and an NFT of the work, offered alongside the Modern and Contemporary South Asian Sotheby’s Auction on 25th October. The works, which are estimated in excess of $120,000 will be sold as a single lot online with cryptocurrency payments accepted, to coincide with the live auction at Sotheby’s, London.
Widely deemed the Master of Modern Indian Painting, M.F. Husain inspired a generation of artists with his output and enjoyed a highly successful career as one of India's most celebrated artists of the 20th century. Lauded by collectors across the globe, M.F Husain’s work has been exhibited extensively and internationally at institutions including the Serpentine Gallery and V&A Museum in London and the Qatar Museum of Islamic Art, Doha.
In his early years Husain grappled with homelessness on the streets of Mumbai before working his way to earning a sizable income as a furniture designer and then quitting his salaried job to pursue a career as an artist. ‘Fury’ can be seen as a manifestation of the raw passion that fueled Husain as an artist, his journey from rags to riches and the tribulations and triumphs of his profession. It is the first of a series of horse paintings by Husain – the most iconic and widely recognised image from his body of work – which he completed in Dubai. Showing M.F Husain’s artistic process serves to preserve his body of work and working practices for successive generations to come.
The phygital sale of ‘Fury’ is a fitting launch to HEFTY.art’s new platform, a venture which gives voice and space to artists, enabling them to thrive both creatively and financially. M.F Husain completed ‘Fury’ in 2000, the year that marked the infamous crash of the ‘dot com era’ triggered by the rise and fall of technology stocks. In the two decades since, advancement and adoption of the internet and technology in every sphere of daily life, including the art world, has taken place across the globe. The sale of ‘Fury’ marks the first of many NFTs to be released by HEFTY.art of artworks by some of the most recognised curators and artists from across the world.
By leading India into the world of NFTs, HEFTY.art aims to give creators the freedom and authority they seek while ensuring that collectors become the rightful owners of a one-of-a-kind digital asset when acquiring a piece of art. NFTs eradicate a range of barriers and make the relationship between art, artists and collectors transparent. They are digital assets enabled by blockchain technology, so when one purchases an NFT, it is backed by a Smart Contract on the blockchain that can automatically process transactions, distribute royalties, and add other functionality/ utility to an artwork. In short, NFTs allow the commercial art world to benefit from many aspects of the blockchain, including security, transparency, immutability, to traceability.
HEFTY.art is a platform for NFT curators, creators and collectors founded by Polygon – the leading platform for Ethereum scaling and infrastructure development and eDAO, a creator economy focused DAO designed to launch global art, gaming, media, and entertainment IPs and communities at scale, into the world of Web3. eDAO will create unique experiences for the largest spectrum of culture though the Strand - a dynamic access pass, free to mint, forever.
Since launching its first NFT sale in 2021, Sotheby’s has witnessed a meteoric rise in this category with approximately $100 million of sales and multiple benchmarks set, including the record for a single CryptoPunk ($11.8m) and a single Bored Ape ($3.4million). Last year, Sotheby’s also launched The Metaverse - a first-of-its-kind dedicated NFT marketplace to serve as a destination for additional NFT sales. It offers a sophisticated viewing experience that marries Sotheby’s renowned curatorial eye with cutting-edge Web3 technology, introducing a unique marketplace for rare and important works. ‘Fury’ will be offered in a single lot online only format and forms an important bridge between the physical and digital artistic realms, and speaking to the broadest spectrum of art lovers.